Marc Wilson suggests Giovanni Trapattoni’s plans can be lost in translation
Ireland full-back says Italian’s instructions are ‘coming across as clear as we can make out’
A dejected Glenn Whelan (left), Simon Cox and Marc Wilson (far right) after Ireland lost 2-1 at home to Sweden last Friday night. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho
Marc Wilson has suggested that even after more than five years in charge the Irish players still struggle sometimes to completely understand what Giovanni Trapattoni is asking of them but the Stoke City player says they do appreciate that the Italian does not want them to be as reliant on the long ball as they were against Sweden.
“That’s a hard one to answer,” said Ireland’s left back whose own performance on Friday – a strong start followed by a poor finish – reflected the way the team played as a whole, when asked if the managers instructions come across clearly. “They’re coming across as clear as we can make out.”
A major criticism levelled at the manager in the wake of the game was that the attacking ability of the two full-backs – Wilson and Séamus Coleman – couldn’t really be utilised because of the long ball tactics employed - but the 26 year-old is adamant that the team simply suffered from the lack of time they have had together with Trapattoni, he suggested, encouraging his men to play more football.
“Of course I’m allowed to go forward,” he said, “but I don’t we get in enough good positions to get forward. I think we need to play it through the middle a bit more, to pass the ball to create chances for us to get forward more (and) I think the more games the lads get....but we’re training with new faces; there’s new faces coming in every day and we haven’t had a lot of time together as a group.
As for whether Trapattioni’s instruction to David Forde is to aim for Shane Long every time he gets the ball, Wilson says: “No I don’t think it is really. Maybe for the first 10 minutes or so, to take the pressure of ourselves, but not after that; No, I don’t think so.
Ultimately, he says: “There are new no excuses....Friday wasn’t good enough.
Despite that, he maintains, the players will head for Vienna determined to do better and driven on by the lingering possibility that they might yet salvage a second place finish in the group.
“There’s a small chance that we can qualify so I think we’ve got to go with that,” he says. “If we were going to go to Austria and just turn up then there’d be no point in going at all. We’ve got to go there with the frame of mind that we can take the three points.”